Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Nigel Skullsworth Pennington

The folks in town say there used to be a cemetery somewhere on the Shadow Farm, but ages have passed and the exact location is unknown. It is said that when there has been enough rain to loosen the soil, the long departed souls can inhabit any life that touches the remains. Such is the case for Nigel Skullsworth Pennington. You see, the roots of the pumpkins have run unusually deep this year, working their way into the mouldering remains. We see Nigel in the moment of realization that he has escaped the bonds of death and now inhabits a new form. Nigel Skullsworth Pennington is ready for mischief.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

What's In a Name?

It is interesting to me how some folks give their Halloween props and artwork names. It is even more interesting some of the names people come up with. I am a big fan of naming my props. I find that it helps me to give them character and emotion. Sometimes I will start with a name already firmly planted in my mind and build a piece around the name. Other times, the prop comes first and the name follows. I jokingly have said that there comes a point when the prop will whisper its name to me. My newest piece is truly a case where the prop has decided what his name needs to be. I have been working on this little guy off and on for a few weeks, and yesterday when I opened the door to the shop the name popped in my mind as soon as I looked at him.
Allow me to introduce you to Nigel Skullsworth Pennington. Little Nigel is a work in progress, and will be offered up for adoption on Etsy when completed.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Memories of a Cat

I had a pretty good business mowing the lawns in Suebelle's neighborhood. Whenever Lawrence and Almeda went on vacation, I was paid to mow the grass. I can't blame them for taking vacations, but what did they do with Suebelle? Did she go with them or did she just sit there in her chair, oozing bodily functions until the inebriated return of her parents. Or maybe they trucked her off to "Revival" (Hall-lay-LOU- yah!) where they would pray for a miracle healing (or a merciful death). I don't know, and really can't stomach dwelling on that subject. All I know is that I would mow the grass, and when I was done I would go across the street and mow the grass of the neighbor lady Mrs. Hole.

What a dreadful name.

but at the same time, what a fitting name. I can't remember much about her appearance. I'm sure it is better that way really. Somewhere in the deep recess of my cognition, I think she wore black as if in mourning. Always in black. I don't think she had a face at all . Just a black dress, baggy skin, snaggly teeth, and a wallet full of five dollar bills to pay for the mowing. I was never invited in to the house( thank god for small favors).When I would finish mowing she would be there with the cash. She was always watching me as I mowed her tiny patch of weeds and swept the broken stairs that led to her dwelling. She had cats. lots of cats. There was a small broken, filthy window that led to her cellar. On a warm day, I could smell the dirt floor, oily rags, and mothballs wafting through the broken glass. Sometimes as I mowed near the house a mangy, matted cat would jump out of the cellar and scare the crap out of me. Did it live there? Could she possibly 'care' for these feral, diseased animals?
One week while I mowed, a single cat lay next to the walk, gasping out its last breathe. I nudged it with my foot as I picked up sticks preparing to mow. It didn't move. It's eyes were glassed over and it was heavy with death. I mowed the strip of grass between the sidewalk and the street. The cat didn't move. I mowed up to the walk. The cat laid there in the tall grass surrounded by the stink of gathering death. I mowed a tidy circle right around the cat . Grass clippings covered its fur and stuck to its eyes. I couldn't believe I just mowed around this creature, but didn't know what else to do. I couldn't possibly touch it, let alone move it. I finished the lawn, and as I was sweeping the walk, prodded the cat one more time. It then bolted from it's deathbed, hissed out a raspy breathe, and slithered away, dragging its helpless hind legs behind it. I felt like screaming. It lurched through the broken window and into the darkness of the cellar. Where it had been laying, the grass was yellow and wet. A knot of maggots frantically squirmed, having been abruptly ripped away from their meal and home.

Sweat poured out of my body as I reeled from what I had just seen. I wanted to leave right then...I didn't care about money after what I had just witnessed. I turned, and there was Mrs. Hole with a wadded and slightly wet five dollar bill . I think she was grinning. All I could see was an oval of yellow matted grass and those hideous teeth. My hand shook as I reached out for the bill, not wanting to come any closer to her than I had to, only wanting to leave on my bicycle as quickly as I could manage.

The next week, the grass where the cat had been was dry and dead. A tall circle of unmowed grass told the story.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Inspiration from Natural Forms

I like to take artistic inspiration from natural sources whenever possible. This year I have had a thing for molds and lichens. It has been a personal goal of mine to be able to reproduce this look convincingly since I have come to the realization that my old styrofoam tombstones really looked bad.I came across this picture that I took some time back, and was pleasantly surprised to find at least 3 new facial inspirations embedded in the old stump. There is a skull shape just to the right of dead center ( I said dead...he he) I think this one is fairly obvious, although when I took the picture I didn't see it. The other two may just be my imagination getting the better of me, but are in the bottom part of the stump on the left. ( a dopey looking half face in the outer bark below the lichens, and a frightened lad peeking out from behind it.) I have no clue if these will make it into a new piece or not, but sometimes discoveries like this take hold in my imagination and just beg to be brought to life.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Glimpses of the Fold

It all makes sense now.

Dreams. Dejavu. Time. Ghosts.

the voices.

and the small glimpses of movement that I have been seeing over the past few months. Little flits in the shadows. I turn my head quickly to see what it was, but there is never anything there. Was it a mouse? A cockroach? my imagination? It has been occurring with greater frequency..deep in the shadows, just out of sight. Always when I am thinking of something else. I can't make it just does. There in a flash then gone...did something just move? I don't know....maddening! But now a dawning of comprehension has occurred, connecting things i never realized. Should I pursue this new knowledge to the point of insanity? Or should i just discount it as passing fancy, returning to the comfort of being oblivious?It defies explanation, and yet somehow I am certain of the truth. Time has folded over on itself. And just as the daily newspaper has folds that force unlike events to go face to face, the folds in time force unlike events to share the same space if only for a fraction of a second. As these folds happen, it is possible to catch a glimpse of another time.

Dreams... memories of the past so vivid that they could be presently happening. Memories of things that never were...people you know but have never met.

Deja vu...Places you have been to but have never seen.

Ghosts...another time folded upon the present, sharing the same space. Somebody there, but not quite.

The motions in the shadows...the deep recess of the fold where beings in another time go about their business, unaware of the fold. And then just as suddenly as this fold has occurred, a wrinkle of time doubling over on itself , time snaps back into line and the fold is gone.

Sunday, May 3, 2009


There is something horribly wrong with the pumpkin crop at The Shadow Farm. Perhaps the legends are true that there used to be a cemetery where the garden now stands. The pumpkin crop has grown very well in the dark, rich soil. The plants have grown strong with deep roots, but every harvest there are no fruits left to pick.

It almost like they are just walking away.

Geezer is currently available to purchase on Etsy.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Character Thoughts...emotion

I have been browsing some old pictures and came across this prop I made a few years ago. It is a Bucky skeleton from ACC that I corpsed with latex and pantyhose. As a Halloween prop, it serves its purpose but I have always felt there is something lacking. I attempt to capture some sort of emotion when creating. This piece seems to lack any hint of prior life...what was she thinking when she died? What was her emotional condition? I have no clue. It is just an in-you-face piece of Halloween gore. Perhaps I feel this way about her because there was very little thought put into creating her. The skeleton already existed, and the corpsing only took a few evenings. I have never given her a name. It is just a corpse used to make my yard scary. In my opinion, there is most definitely a difference in making a Halloween prop and creating a piece of art.

I think I prefer to make characters.